Tablet computer OS market - additional information
During the 1990s, various early versions of touch-screen display computers were launched to limited commercial success. Such devices, as the PalmPilot, the GRiDPad or the Apple Newton, were the precursors of today’s tablet computers. The launch of Apple’s iPad in April 2010 dramatically changed the market in terms of technology and consumer expectations, making tablets a mainstream product. As of 2014, an estimated 20 percent of the global population owned a tablet.
Although it was the most successful device on the tablet market when it came out, the iPad, with its own operating system, the iOS, has been losing ground in front of its competitors. As of 2015, Apple’s tablet device holds a 23.5 percent market share and has registered a slight decrease in global sales, from 26 million units in the first fiscal quarter of 2014 to 21 million units sold in its first fiscal quarter of 2015. This might be due to a sharp increase in the market size, with countless new models available to customers.
Furthermore, the iOS’ lower share on the tablet operating system market is its restriction to Apple devices alone, such as the iPhone, iPad or Apple Watch, requiring specifically designed apps and programs. On the other hand, iOS’ main competitor, Google’s Android, owes its success to its strong collaboration with many mobile device manufacturers and high adaptability to various types of hardware. In fact, as of the second quarter of 2015, the so called “white box” or “no name” tablet manufacturers, which use Android as their OS, were dominating the market. In 2016, Android is projected to hold more than 60 percent of the tablet OS market share and over 80 percent of new smartphones were Android-operated devices. Microsoft’s Windows mobile OS is coming in a distant third on the tablet operating system market, but its share is expected to increase in the upcoming years.